In a rotational move, EP Kings coach Brent Janse van Rensburg has made only one change to the team to play the Pumas in an Absa Currie Cup Premier Division rugby match in Nelspruit on Friday 18 September 18.
Following their win over the Free State Cheetahs last weekend, Janse van Rensburg has kept the changes to a minimum, with the only switch seeing prop Schalk Ferreira taking Lizo Gqoboka’s spot in the front row, with Gqoboka named on the bench.
“The team is very similar to last week’s side but this week we will be starting Schalk Ferreira at loosehead, with Lizo dropping to the bench,” Janse van Rensburg said. “It is part of our rotation plan after Lizo played three games in a row.
“Schalk is a very experienced forward and we felt it was time to give him another opportunity after he played three in a row earlier in the season.”
Despite registering their first win of the season over the Cheetahs, Janse van Rensburg said they realised they would face a massive challenge in Nelspruit.
“That win was very important for us because it was reward for the hard work the players have put in and it will have helped our confidence,” Janse van Rensburg. “But we know, while we need to be confident, we cannot be arrogant because we will still have to work hard for any win and nothing will just fall into our laps.
“Playing in Nelspruit is always a tough challenge and we know the Pumas will be out to make a statement after losing to Griquas last weekend.”
Captain Tim Whitehead echoed Janse van Rensburg’s sentiments and said their focus remained solely in their next game.
“Yes, it (the win) was a bit of a relief for us because we have been working so hard over the last couple of months and just to be rewarded with a good victory over the Cheetahs was massive for us,” Whitehead said. “But now we are really keen for the next challenge and we are making sure we are just focusing on one game at a time.”
The EP Kings team is (1-15): Schalk Ferreira, Martin Ferreira, Tom Botha, Stefan Willemse, Steven Sykes (vice-captain), Paul Schoeman, Thembelani Bholi, Tim Agaba, Enrico Acker, Karlo Aspeling, Luther Obi, Tim Whitehead (captain), JP du Plessis, Siyanda Grey, Scott van Breda.
Replacements (16-22): Edgar Marutlulle, Lizo Gqoboka, Simon Kerrod, Cornel Hess, Jacques Engelbrecht, Dwayne Kelly, Elgar Watts.
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